Cut the Adverbs

I’ve been reading Stephen King’s On Writing. One of his writing tips is to cut back on adverbs. He says that they weaken writing with unnecessary description. He says it’s better to find the right verb or to leave it up to the imagination of the reader.

Well, this morning I was listening to the local NPR station (WITF) when announcer described how the president of a local college “died unexpectedly“. I’m sure the gentleman in question wasn’t planning on dying that day. It is a commonly used expression and does provide some useful information. But it wasn’t needed to convey the fact that he died.

I would highly recommend this book for anyone interested in the craft of writing. In the first part of the book King describes important points in his life that led to his success as a writer. He grew up near my home town of Lewiston, Maine. It adds a whole new character to the description of a place and the actions that happen there when you know the place intimately. Since many of King’s novels take place in Maine, I often get that feeling. 

This entry was posted in Observations. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply